Q: Please tell us when new episodes of Criminal Minds will start and whether Mandy Patinkin will be in the cast. — Nancy Goldstone, Stuart
A: The crime drama begins its seventh year Sept. 21 on CBS, and we can say with reasonable certainty that Patinkin will not back on the show. Perhaps you’ve been immersed in the repeats from earlier seasons on A&E Network and/or ION, but Patinkin rather famously decided to leave the series on short notice after the first two years “due to creative differences,” as the statement to the press read at the time. Though such cast members as A.J. Cook and Paget Brewster will be returning, Patinkin is not among them.
Q. Will Harry’s Law, starring Kathy Bates, be returning to TV? — Mary Ann Raines, Edgewater, Md.
A: It already has, since NBC has added repeats of the first-season episodes back into its Monday lineup, offering evidence why Bates is a current Emmy nominee for the show (for outstanding lead actress in a drama series). The program begins new episodes in a Wednesday slot Sept. 21, and some casting changes will be evident. Brittany Snow has left the series, and Mark Valley ( Human Target) — who previously worked with Harry’s Law executive producer David E. Kelley on Boston Legal — will become a new costar, as will Tony Award winner Karen Olivo ( West Side Story). And Christopher McDonald is being upped to costar status in his continuing role as Tommy Jefferson.
Q: Who was the actor who played Jane Rizzoli’s love interest in the season premiere of Rizzoli & Isles? What else has he appeared in? — Mary Dobinski, Grand Junction, Colo.
A: He’s British-born Chris Vance, who starred in the Fox series Mental. He’s also had roles on such series as Dexter, Burn Notice and Prison Break, and in Australia — where he found a lot of work before coming to America — he was featured in the shows All Saints, The Secret Life of Us and Stingers.